Citation: McDowell. "Sketch: An Experience with Salvia divinorum (25x extract) (exp63587)". Erowid.org. Feb 8, 2008. erowid.org/exp/63587
The following is a sketch written five hours after having smoked a 25x dose of Salvia. I was once an experienced user of Salvia, having smoked extract two or three times a day for a few months. I have had some mind-bending trips, but nothing came close to the intensity of this experience. I had only a small amount of extract, given to me the night before by an aquaintance. I’d been drinking pretty heavy the night before, was hungover. I held on to the Salvia and decided to smoke it at the end of the day, evening while children were playing in the street.
I was frustrated when I decided to smoke it. I was supposed to have spent the day writing, but had failed at that. I was tired and hungover. And I hadn’t given much thought to what I was doing by smoking the drug. I’d had a good exposure to Salvia and though I once told myself that I would never do it again, today was meant to be a pleasant, one time return. Just to remember the feeling. It’s nothing, I thought – intense, but it doesn’t last.
I don’t own a pipe so I made a pocket in an empty beer can and pooked pin holes through it. I sat on my bed and had but a pinch of the extract. My first hit was not so good because my lighter kept flaking out on me. But I held the smoke long in my lungs and I felt that vivid familiar first feeling of the drug creeping into the space behind my eyes. I took a second hit. A big one. A held on to it. I remember blowing out a thick cloud of smoke. And then this:
I have my eyes closed or open. What goes on for three seconds of unrememberable blackness. I am lying down. Am I? There is a staircase in the cellar. I am lying down and the angle of the staircase repeatedly hits me in the chest. Just as the children scream: “Find yourself a leg. Find your self a leg. Find yourself a leg.” I am so shuffled down by the angle of the stairs. What am I? Does this any relate?
“Find yourself a leg. Find yourself a leg.”
I struggle to focus my thoughts. I am a body? The children scream and cheer at the corner of my thoughts. At the window. Everything is very pale brown, like baby diarrhea. I am able to move my legs and I recognize the form of my body. Worry is strong and horrible.
“Where are you where are you where are you where are you,” the children scream from the window.
I have to hold on to the consciousness of having a body. I might forget. It is an upward struggle. I am pinned by the angle of the stairs in the cellar. What am I doing and how did I become me now?
“Where are you where are you where are you where are you,” the children scream.
I am on my back. How did I get to be here? I am able to move my head. The bed side table. I am in bed? The children scream and cheer at the corner of my thoughts. They are one voice inside my ear, from the window on the bedroom wall. The stairs in the cellar hit me in the chest and I am forgetting that I am a body in my bed. I shook. Worry is sudden and terrible.
“Find like you’re living? Find like you’re living?” the children now scream in their voice.
I am terrified. I am in bed. This will go on forever. Do not slip away. It is an upwards struggle to remember. Must move or forever be vegitate here. I jolt upright and try to walk forward. My body feels a need to writhe. I am a worm hallucinating. I shudder and stand up, kicking over a blender and spill water everywhere. There is lots of brown in this room. The window blinds are drawn shut, thank heaven.
“Find you’re living?”
“Yes,” I say, and the children scream and cheer. Is all this world for me? There is somebody downstairs. I fall back in bed and the angle of the staircase is still heavy, knocking into my chest, but the staircase itself is fading. I am struggling to focus my eyes on the room and to hold on to it. It is an upward battle. I am holding on to the things I have learned: I am a body. I have a will. I am in my bedroom and the children are beyond the window. I am fighting to remember things, but I forget and this blunt angle keeps hitting me in the chest.
“Be quite or you’ll be caught,” the children scream, just left of my brain. “Be quiet or you’ll be caught. Be quiet or you’ll be caught.”
Who is it downstairs? Does my walking betray something? Is there ill intent? Have I got time? What war is waged in the spaces around my body? If I should die.
“Be quiet,” the children scream, so I lay in bed and feel like crying.
I remember. When first my head and body felt like cotton and I sucked the last bit of smoke from the beer can. I remember letting go the cloud of smoke. And what time can pass during an abyss which is unconscious of itself, and therefore unknowable beyond itself? I feel terrible and the angle is still heavy in my chest, my head. And the children are shouting, “Find yourself a leg. Find your self a leg. Find yourself a leg.” I feel as though I am taking steps backward.
I remember. I am safe and no harm will come from time around me. How long time is when you are too high to read the clocks of this earth. Beyond breathing I had forgotten all processes of life. I list to myself the things I have learned: I am a body. I am alone in my bedroom. I have time so time need not worry me. Time does continue to worry me.
“Who is downstairs?” the children scream.
“A man is downstairs,” I say.
The children scream and cheer. I am holding on to fact and succeeding. But it is an upward struggle and I am still on my back. Get up, or else forever be vegitate like this. There is a woman somewhere that is near to me. I do not want to be found like this.
I remember. I sit up and look at the floor and see the beer can with white ash in it’s crumple. I never will do this again. Something had been so familiar when first my mind went to cotton. But then I was out like an unintelligable abyss and now the angle of the stairs is sharp against my chest and the rest of my body.
“How long does this last? How long does this last?” the children scream.
“Not long,” I say. But too long. I had not counted on it.
I am able to stand and walk around the room. The room is a mess. I step around art supplies littered on the floor. I wade into a puddle of water spilt on the floor. I go out the bedroom door and into the hallway. Should I go speak with the man downstairs? The angles are fading, but everything is struggle. I am terrified of potential of being called upon by another conscious being. I am terrified to have to explain myself. I sit by the open window in the hallway. I feel terrible and I want to cry.
Back in my bedroom. The children are out the window. I know this. But they make me forget it by shouting in my ear.
“go down” they shout.
How will I ever explain this to the girl? Are the girl and man the same? As in a being other than myself? I have defined myself from out of a void. I look at the clock on the bedside table and wonder how much longer this smoke will last. Then I sudden get brave. I hold a pen and find a paper. What kind of reporter would fall in these fields? I pen to the paper. The children at the window scream – GO DOWN. the pen is wet, is hard to hold onto. Concentration slips and I am waiting to get out.
The children at the window scream, “Look. Oh, it’s time.” My hand shakes as I try to write.
It’s a song – ‘Oh Darling come back for us where you stand – give up.’
“Give up,” the children out the window scream.
I know now certainly that it will end. But I cannot imagine how life will be after this experience. How could I have forgotten the intensity of this trip? How will I explain this to the girl. I still cannot conceptualize the difference between the girl and the man downstairs – between conscious beings who are not myself. This will fade. I have faith, but I am full of terror. I look at the clock on the bedside table. 7:46. I had not known the time before this despite my casual effort to find it. The children scream and cheer.
Now I am lying on the bed. My body wants to evaporate. I have a physical sensation that I do not understand – a desire like I feel a sexual desire in my gut and my groin? this a desire from the chest to be released of this body.
There is then the potential of an incredible abyss, unknowable whenever not being known. I tape record a message to myself on a hand held recorder near the bed.
“For the sake of documentation this is me coming down off a can and a basement set of stairs. I was very worried about who I was. And life was... – I was in so deep I could not comprehend the activity of being alive, and of what role I played to it. And now I am terrified and I want this to wear off.” I take a deep breath and sigh, “There are children screaming out the window.” “And everything was a task to figure out. ‘Oh, what do I have to do? Who am I? I have the power to move?’ Oh, god I feel terrible right now.”
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